Tag Archives: praying for marriage bed

What Posture Do You Use When You Pray?

When I go looking for photos to go along with my blog posts on prayer, I see lot of different positions people strike to approach their Heavenly Father. Let me show you a sampling:

Woman praying in church sanctuary

Kneeling, Hands Folded

Woman's hands on Bible folded in prayer

Hands Folded on Bible

Person on knees praying at sunrise with hands lifted to Heaven

Kneeling with Hands Raised

A group of young women bow their heads and pray while holding hands

Holding Hands with Others

Indeed, there are many different postures you can take. And I’ve come to believe our posture can help us focus on the act of praying.

Growing up, I was taught you had to close your eyes during prayer. As an adult, I looked back and understood the goal was to shut out distractions so that you could concentrate on God. But honestly, keeping my eyes closed tended to be even more distracting. It was seriously freeing when I realized that I didn’t have to close my eyes to prayer. I could choose my prayer posture.

You can choose your prayer posture. Click To Tweet

I scanned the 165 verses in the New Testament in which the word “pray” appears, and kneeling appears to be the most common posture (Luke 22:41, Acts 9:40, Acts 20:36, Acts 21:5, Ephesians 3:14-16). But we also have examples of lifting hands in prayer (1 Timothy 2:8), placing hands on someone to pray for them (Matthew 19:13), and falling face-down on the ground (Mark 14:35, Matthew 26:39). That’s nine verses, leaving a whopping 156 New Testament verses that just talk about praying with no specific posture.

Maybe the underlying message is get into a posture that makes you aware of your relationship to your Father and/or the person you’re praying with/for and then just talk to God. What’s most important is that you pray.

I’ve been experimenting with prayer postures to see what works. Sometimes it depends on what I’m praying about or the time of day or my environment. For instance, I love praying outside, especially on a star-filled night. Looking up to the Heavens and seeing the bright lights of faraway constellations always reminds me how big my God is, while still making me feel that He cares about little ol’ me.

But I started to wonder about when we pray as a couple. What postures are good for couples to take when going to God about their marriage and/or sexual intimacy?

We can:

  • bow our heads together
  • hold hands
  • link arms
  • embrace one another fully
  • kneel together
  • raise our hands toward Heaven
  • lie prostrate next one another

And really anything else you can come up with. It’s a good idea to try different prayer postures to see what works for you as a couple. What helps you both focus on God and feel connected to one another as you pray?

Try different prayer postures to see what works for you as a couple. Click To Tweet

Once during an interview, I received an excellent question about where and how my husband and I specifically pray together. I ended up admitting that my favorite place to pray with him is in the shower. Yep, that posture is hugging one another under a stream of water, and it feels very focused and intimate to me.

I don’t know where and how you and your spouse best pray together. But think about your prayer posture. The right posture might help you pray together for your marriage and marriage bed.

Praying for Sexual Health

One of the obstacles many couples face with sexual intimacy is their health. That can include anything from chronic illness to physiological problems to mood disorders. While sex is good for your health, sound health is also good for your sex life.

Most Christians have a lot of experience praying about health issues. We pray for those in our midst who are facing life-threatening disease, for those dealing with the consequences of an accident, for those having medical tests and wanting optimistic results.

But have you prayed about the health issues that impact your own marriage bed?

Blog post title with close-up of woman with praying hands

I suspect if I polled spouses, a strong majority would say that poor health has at one time or other negatively affected the sexual intimacy in their marriage. But do we recognize those issues readily? Do we bring those before God?

One of the two Greek words most used in the New Testament to mean healing is iaomai, which brings with it the connotation not merely of good health but wholeness. Yes, it refers to physical healing (like when Jesus healed the Centurion’s servant and an official’s son), but it’s also translated as being made whole.

I believe God wants us to operate from a place of wholeness in our marriage beds.

Of course, I don’t mean that every spouse will experience perfect health. Some of us will nevertheless face challenges, because this is a broken world, but we can pray for God to help us deal with our health issues.

Sometimes it means asking for God to put people in our lives—friends, mentors, doctors, therapists—who can give us answers and treatment. Sometimes it means asking Him to guide us to the answers we need to fix what’s amiss (see The Unveiled Wife’s story). Sometimes it means asking for strength and support to cope with physical issues that won’t go away, but can be managed. Sometimes it means asking God for a divine kick in the pants to get ourselves on that diet or exercise program we’ve been meaning to adopt. …

(Sorry, I had to stop to stare at myself in the mirror on that last one.)

Sometimes it means meditating before Him about what wholeness would look like and asking Him to point out where our health issues are. We might have overlooked how stress or depression or physical pain have hampered our sex life, until we look to our Heavenly Parent and ask Him to tell us what’s happening with our marriage bed. Like a doting mother, He may check our temperature and diagnose what’s wrong. If we’ll ask, and then listen.

I don’t know what this looks like for you, but I know that health challenges are a common issue with us marrieds. And I’m wondering if we’re really praying to be made whole. Not just for the sake of feeling better, but so that we can experience better physical intimacy in our marriage.

How have you prayed for health in your marriage? Have you prayed about health issues that affect your marriage bed?

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well” (3 John 1:2).

What Happens When You Pray (for Your Marriage)?

I’ve been writing a lot about prayer on Saturdays here on my blog, with the hope and encouragement that you’ll spend more time in prayer with God — specifically about your marriage and your marriage bed.

This past week, a Catholic friend of mine shared a video that caught my eye, and I thought it was so good I wanted to share it with y’all. I don’t know this priest, but his name is Father Mike Schmitz and he apparently has a YouTube channel, a podcast, and more. But I loved his points about the Power of Prayer:

What if you tapped into that power of prayer so that:

  1. You become a cause agent for positive change in your marriage and marriage bed?
  2. You are changed to become a better partner, companion, lover?
  3. You deepen your relationship with your Heavenly Father?

Aren’t those worthy goals to make prayer a priority this coming week?

How to Pray for Your Husband

When I typed that title, I really wanted to write the definitive article on how to pray for your husband. I could even do a step-by-step guide, like WikiHow does.

If you haven’t been to WikiHow, it’s a website that boasts it can explain “how to do anything.” With detailed descriptions and pictures, the site provides clear directions on all kinds of things, including how to shave your legs, make homemade candles, and even avoid or escape a bull. Though by the time you decide to look up that last lesson, it’s probably too late.

Then I wondered: What if WikiHow already has the definitive article on how to pray for your husband? I didn’t see that one, but I did find How to Pray Effectively (Christianity) and How to Pray as a Christian. Maybe they’re just waiting on my brilliant article on How to Pray for Your Husband.

Blog post title + woman praying with sunlight beaming on her

Except I don’t think there is a simple step-by-step. How you need to pray for your husband really depends on who he is and where you are in your marriage and in life.

The non-believing husband likely needs prayer focused on God reaching out to him and also asking God for help with how you can be a living testimony in your marriage. While the deeply religious husband may need prayer for his spiritual leadership in the church and for his evangelism efforts.

The low-drive husband may need prayer for the courage to address sexual infrequency in your marriage and for you to know how to communicate lovingly about that topic. While the high-drive husband may need prayer to better understand your physiological challenges and for you to be more open to his advances.

I could go on with other issues husbands face in life or marriage — porn habits, anger, personal insecurity, etc. — but how to pray for your husband is about the unique husband you have.

So what can you do?

Observe. Too often we assume what’s going on with our spouse, or misinterpret based on our own biases. Become a better observer of what’s really going on. Where does your husband spend much of his time? Who is important in his life? Where does he seem confident, and where does he seem to fumble? Look for clues about what really matters to him and where he needs intercessory prayer.

Listen. What topics does your husband bring up? What worries does he share with you? What dreams or desires has he expressed? When does he shut conversation down? Lots of us wives are better talkers than listeners, but if we’ll listen better, we’ll learn more about our man and how to pray for him.

Reflect. Consider deeply what you truly want for your husband. Go deeper than “I want him to listen to me,” “I want him to help with the housework,” and such, let’s face it, selfish issues. Rather, ask what kind of man your husband would be if he was living up to his God-given potential. What would that look like — in his work, in his parenting, in his marriage, in your sex life? Reflect on what God wants for your husband, and then make that your prayer.

Ask. Why not ask him how he wants you to pray for him? Wouldn’t you respond well to that question? It shows that your spouse is thinking about you, wants to bring your concerns before God, and cares about your well-being. And if your husband answers with specifics, you’ll know exactly what matters to him and can bring that before God.

Invite. You can also invite your husband to pray with you. Then you can hear his concerns as he expresses them to God and add your own support. You can also pray in front of him for things that you desire for him to have, letting him hear your heart for how you want God involved in your marriage and your husband’s life.

Release. What if you sat before God and simply released your husband to Him? What if you came before God with no certainty about what to pray for your husband, but simply meditated on God’s goodness and provision? I suspect that’s what some of us wives need to do from time to time.

Despite the fact that you can read these in order, in nice succinct paragraphs, this is not a step-by-step guide. Rather, these are ideas about how you can figure out how to pray for your husband. You know your husband better than I do, and God knows Him even better than that. I trust that you two, or three, can figure it out.

What other suggestions do y’all have for praying for your husband? Or, for the men reading, praying for your wife?

Do You Need to Be a Prayer Warrior for Your Marriage?

In Christian circles, this phrase has become very popular: prayer warrior. I’m not sure who first used this phrase, but it’s a reference to the spiritual warfare Christians are fighting. Ephesians 6:10-18 says:

Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by His vast strength. Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the tactics of the Devil. For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world powers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens. This is why you must take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand. Stand, therefore,

with truth like a belt around your waist,
righteousness like armor on your chest,
and your feet sandaled with readiness
for the gospel of peace.
In every situation take the shield of faith,
and with it you will be able to extinguish
all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
Take the helmet of salvation,
and the sword of the Spirit,
which is God’s word.

Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert in this with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints.

The apostle Paul describes us as being in a battle against Satan for the salvation of our souls and the glory of our God. His final encouragement is for us to pray at all times. Thus, I presume, the notion of the prayer warrior, all strapped up in her spiritual armor and doing battle on her knees.

But I gotta say — I don’t feel like a prayer warrior. More like a foot soldier.

In fact, I think all the encouragement to be a prayer warrior has sometimes served to discourage me. I’m 100% sure that was not the intent, but rather a genuine desire to see God’s people devote themselves more to prayer.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful” (Colossians 4:2).

Yet, “prayer warrior” has always felt a bit daunting to me. I think it’s because:

1. When you decide to stay praying more, it feels like a really high bar to go from not-doing-so-well to being on the front lines of spiritual battle. As if you’re the William Wallace of fearless, persistent prayer.

Let's Pray! with Movie Still from Braveheart

Can’t I just start out as one of those guys a few rows back? Like I’m totally in the battle but not quite ready to lead the charge.

2. It can come across that other people are better Christians and have better marriages because they find praying easier. And I don’t think that’s true. We should all grow in the spiritual disciplines commanded in Scripture, but I suspect we have our favorites — habits less difficult for us to form.

For instance, I’m totally fine with researching biblical passages, their context, Greek meanings of words, etc.; it’s a somewhat natural way for me to relate to God by studying His Word. But somehow, prayer is more of a challenge.

3. Sometimes there’s an underlying message that if God’s not answering your prayer, if you’re still struggling in your marriage or marriage bed, it’s because you’re not warrior-like enough about it. That if only you’d fight harder through prayer, things would work out.

It agree that we may need to pray more frequently and earnestly to break through, but God could also be answering our specific requests with “you first,” or “not yet,” or even “fuhgettaboutit.” Moreover, are we really the powerful ones in prayer that make things happen based on how well we do it?

The more I learn about prayer, the more I think that God just wants us to show up. Maybe it’s less important to reach prayer warrior status (whatever that means) and more important that you don’t go AWOL. We have to keep talking to God, keep listening for His voice, and keep believing He will intervene in our marriage and marriage bed in His perfect way and perfect timing.

But God can’t do anything through prayer if you don’t ever show up.

Now if you consider yourself a prayer warrior and that’s working well for you, great. But I’ve been working through this series on prayer with the idea that there are a lot of people like me, for whom a thriving prayer life has been a challenge at times. To myself and to them, I want to say: You don’t have to be a prayer warrior — just step out on the battlefield.

You don't have to be a prayer warrior -- just step out on the battlefield. Click To Tweet

God’s really good at fighting battles with and for us if we’ll just show up.

The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still” (Exodus 14:14).

Do not be afraid of them; the Lord your God himself will fight for you” (Deuteronomy 3:22).

And I believe God wants to fight for your marriage — to save your marriage if it’s in trouble, to protect your marriage if it’s being attacked by the enemy, to help it thrive if it’s been ho-hum. He wants to be on that battlefield with us — whether you’re a prayer warrior or a foot soldier.

Just step out and join Him in the fight.